Rope access technicians are trained to carry out a range of tasks from cleaning to installation works at heights, whilst suspended from a rope. Technicians who are trained in rope access are in demand in industries such as telecommunications and construction because of their ability to reach heights and areas which would be hard to access with scaffolding or machinery.
Why should your workforce switch to rope access technicians to carry out work at height?
One of the biggest reasons for ditching the machinery and adapting to rope access is the efficiency of humans versus large and slow machines, which can take time to move around and extend equipment or lift people to the necessary heights. This equipment can also take time to hire, transport, and perform maintenance or inspections.
Using rope access ultimately leads to
- Fewer man-hours used on training, setting up, using and maintaining equipment
- Less time looking for and waiting for the correct equipment
- Fewer disruptions or delays such as emails, paperwork, and restricting access if the maintenance you require means closing the business or area to the public.
Ease of access
Ease of access is a major benefit with rope access. Technicians on ropes can reach smaller and harder to reach places, where equipment and machinery may not be able to go.
This is also a benefit for areas that will need to be closed to the public to carry out maintenance work. For example on narrow streets where the necessary machinery may not have access, or in an area where restricting access to allow for machinery could disrupt business or cause problems.
Rope access technicians are trained to the industry standards, where there are rules and regulations in place to ensure rope access training over the country is safe and regulated. Rope access technicians will need to be competent and confident in their skills when performing rope access activities, something that can’t always be confirmed when hiring or purchasing machinery for carrying out work at height.
In addition, rope access technicians are trained to carry out rescue procedures and emergency first aid at height if something were to go wrong. When using machinery instead of rope access, you will need to ensure that workers are trained on the equipment as well as confirm the equipment is safe, up to standard, and not faulty.
Rope access technicians are trained to the industry standards, where there are rules and regulations in place to ensure rope access training over the country is safe. Rope access technicians will need to be competent and confident in their skills when performing rope access activities, something that can’t always be confirmed when hiring or purchasing machinery for carrying out work at height.
When using machinery instead of rope access, you will need to ensure that workers are trained on the equipment, such as a LOLER training course, as well as confirming the equipment is safe, up to standard, and not faulty.
Unlike most machinery and equipment which is fuelled by petrol, diesel, oil and electricity, rope access technicians usually run on coffee, sandwiches, and the odd biscuit. This means more money is saved in way of fuel, and the company’s carbon footprint reduces as you switch out fossil-fuel guzzling machines for rope access technicians.
Rope access technicians can carry out a multitude of work and can be trained to take on new work to fit the businesses needs. For example, rope access technicians can carry out a small engineering job, as well as an inspection, without having to hire lifting equipment on separate occasions.
If your business regularly accesses and performs work at height, you may have forked out for a specialist piece of equipment to help you carry out the work. For example, a boom lift, scissor lift, scaffolding or a cherry picker. This piece of equipment is now taking up space in the warehouse, where more stock could be stored for a profit. Switching to rope access will eliminate this problem, as the technicians themselves don’t need to be stored and rope access equipment is easy to handle, store, and maintain.
Unlike machines we have talked about previously, rope access technicians can carry out work on different types of terrain, in different weather conditions, and can adapt to the environment around them. Cherry pickers, for example, don’t have this capability. Ensuring the conditions are suitable for your machine takes time, and you may even have to travel to complete a recce beforehand which will cost your business time and money.
Rope access technicians can be responsible for their own assessments, and decide whether the job can be completed safely in the conditions.
Being much smaller than most equipment used for working at heights, rope access technicians can reach many different spaces from small and confined areas to heights that machinery cannot reach. Being able to adjust the ropes to elevate or lower themselves is a benefit with rope access as machinery has a limit to the height it can reach, and how close it can get to the work area.
Real people work better with real people when things go wrong. When scheduling conflicts arise, the weather takes a turn for the worst, or work priorities change, your rope access technicians are going to be easier to reschedule than the scaffolding or scissor lift you’ve hired for the day and now can’t use. Rope access technicians can change plans quickly if there is a sudden change in conditions such as weather.
- Rope access is generally more time-efficient.
- Rope access technicians can reach difficult areas with ease.
- Rope access technicians are trained to the latest regulations and have rescue plans in case problems arise.
- Rope access is usually cheaper than hiring or purchasing machinery to complete the job.
- Using rope access will always be more environmentally friendly than oil, petrol, diesel, or electricity.
- Technicians can be multi skilled, allowing them to complete a wider range of tasks.
- Rope access equipment requires little space for storage.
- Technicians can work in a wider range of terrains and weather conditions.
- Accessing smaller areas or greater heights is easy with rope access.
- Technicians are easy to reschedule and negotiate with if scheduling conflicts arise.
If you are considering rope access training for your workforce or as an individual, check out our rope access training course or contact us for more information.
This entry-level Rope Access course is based on the requirements of BS 7985. The course is designed for those who have specific trade skills but wish to use rope access as a method of gaining access to their workplace.